Nestle’s “profitability and return on invested capital.” “The global pandemic,” Schneider said, “did not slow us down.”
You know what else didn’t slow them down? Ample evidence that their profitability relies on a supply chain that includes literal slave labor in the Ivory Coast. The US Supreme Court recently heard Nestle USA v. Doe, a long-running case that seemed to get at how much responsibility corporations have for international human rights violations, but in the end may have taught us more about what legal tools are useful in getting to that accountability. We got some clarity on the case from William Dodge, professor at University of California/Davis School of Law.
A special on-the-ground report from West Africa.
By Brian O’Keefe March 1, 2016 6:30 AM EST
For a decade and a half, the big chocolate makers have promised to end child labor in their industry—and have spent tens of millions of dollars in the effort. But as of the latest estimate, 2.1 million West African children still do the dangerous and physically taxing work of harvesting cocoa. What will it take to fix the problem?
The boy with the machete is watching us. We’re sitting in an SUV in the middle of a rugged, red-dirt road about 10 miles outside the city of Abengourou, in eastern Ivory Coast. It’s just after 8 a.m. on a Saturday, and the early morning haze hasn’t yet burned off, so a mist hangs over the fields around us. We’ve been slowly bumping along on our way to meet some farmers in a nearby village called Appoisso but stop for a moment to take in the scene. Suddenly the boy is standing right next to us. He looks curious, but wary too.